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1.
Front Public Health ; 10: 935405, 2022.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2142316

ABSTRACT

Purpose: To determine the prevalence and factors associated with computer vision syndrome in medical students at a private university in Paraguay. Methods: A survey study was conducted in 2021 in a sample of 228 medical students from the Universidad del Pacífico, Paraguay. The dependent variable was CVS, measured with the Computer Visual Syndrome Questionnaire (CVS-Q). Its association with covariates (hours of daily use of notebook, smartphone, tablet and PC, taking breaks when using equipment, use of preventive visual measures, use of glasses, etc.) was examined. Results: The mean age was 22.3 years and 71.5% were women. CVS was present in 82.5% of participants. Higher prevalence of CVS was associated with wearing a framed lens (PR = 1.11, 95% CI: 1.03-1.20). In contrast, taking a break when using electronic equipment at least every 20 min and every 1 h reduced 7% (PR = 0.93, 95% CI: 0.87-0.99) and 6% (PR = 0.94, 95% CI: 0.89-0.99) the prevalence of CVS, respectively. Conclusion: Eight out of 10 students experienced CVS during the COVID-19 pandemic. The use of framed lenses increased the presence of CVS, while taking breaks when using electronic equipment at least every 20 min and every 1 h reduced CVS.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Occupational Diseases , Students, Medical , Adult , Computers , Cross-Sectional Studies , Ergonomics , Female , Humans , Male , Occupational Diseases/epidemiology , Pandemics , Paraguay/epidemiology , Surveys and Questionnaires , Syndrome , Universities , Young Adult
2.
J Occup Environ Med ; 64(11): 964-969, 2022 Nov 01.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2107634

ABSTRACT

OBJECTIVES: We surveyed how home-working conditions, specifically furniture and computer use, affected self-reported musculoskeletal problems and work performance. METHODS: Questionnaires from 4112 homeworkers were analyzed. The relationship between subjective musculoskeletal problems or work performance and working conditions were determined by logistic regression analyses. RESULTS: More than half the homeworkers used a work desk, work chair, and laptop computer. However, approximately 20% of homeworkers used a low table, floor chair/floor cushion, or other furniture that was different from the office setup. Using a table of disproportionate size and height, sofa, floor cushion, and floor chair were associated with neck/shoulder pain or low back pain. Disproportionate table and chair, floor cushion, and tablet computer were associated with poor work performance. CONCLUSIONS: Disproportionate desk and chair, floor cushion/chair, and computer with small screen may affect musculoskeletal problems and home-working performance.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Musculoskeletal Diseases , Occupational Diseases , Work Performance , Humans , Interior Design and Furnishings , COVID-19/epidemiology , Teleworking , Pandemics , Computers , Musculoskeletal Diseases/epidemiology , Musculoskeletal Diseases/complications , Ergonomics , Occupational Diseases/epidemiology , Occupational Diseases/complications
5.
Cent Eur J Public Health ; 30(3): 201-204, 2022 Sep.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2081265

ABSTRACT

OBJECTIVES: The aim of the analysis was to determine the probable places of coronavirus transmission in association with the work and compare the situation between 2020 and 2021. METHODS: The work analysed data from the Information System of Infectious Diseases managed by the Institute of Health Information and Statistics of the Czech Republic in the period from March 2020 - December 2021. RESULTS: 2,483,219 COVID-19 cases were officially confirmed (732,202 during 2020 and 1,338,790 in 2021), from them 140,368 (6%) represented work-related disease, 520,830 cases (21%) work-related contact, and 1,822,021 (73%) out-of-work contact. There were identified 13 occupations with the highest incidence of COVID-19 in the observed period (458,341 cases), in descending order - clerk, machinist, teacher, craftsman, worker/agency worker, driver, sales worker/cashier, warehouse worker/expediter, nurse, manager, food worker, paramedic, and social worker. Comparing 2020 and 2021, there was a difference in the ranking of occupations by incidence of disease. In 2021, the risk of infection acquiring increased for the occupations clerk, machinist, craftsman, worker/agency worker, manager, and food worker, while it decreased for the health professions (nurse, other paramedic, physician) and for social worker; 5,514 cases of COVID-19 were recognized as an occupational disease in 2020 and 2021, from them 5,483 cases (99.4%) in the health and social care economic activity sector. CONCLUSION: The available data show probable exposures to an infectious agent (without proof of specific contact with the source of the infection), of which 27% cases of COVID-19 are related to work (cases of work-related disease and work-related contact represented together the closest relationship to work). Different relevant anti-epidemic measures in the workplace have considerable practical importance for epidemic control. The use of personal protection of the mouth and nose with respirators/muffs is essential to reduce the risk of airborne transmission.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Occupational Diseases , COVID-19/epidemiology , Czech Republic/epidemiology , Humans , Infectious Disease Transmission, Patient-to-Professional/prevention & control , Occupational Diseases/epidemiology , SARS-CoV-2
6.
Rev. latinoam. enferm. (Online) ; 29: e3455, 2021. tab, graf
Article in English | WHO COVID, LILACS (Americas) | ID: covidwho-2054539

ABSTRACT

Objective: to analyze evidence concerning the risks of occupational illnesses to which health workers providing care to patients infected with COVID-19 are exposed. Method: integrative literature review conducted in the following online databases: Medical Literature Analysis and Retrieval System Online (MEDLINE/PubMed), Web of Science (WoS), Excerpta Medica Data-Base (EMBASE), Cumulative Index to Nursing and Allied Health Literature (CINAHL) and Scopus (Elsevier). Original articles published between November 2019 and June 2020, regardless of the language written, were included. A descriptive analysis according to two categories is presented. Results: the sample is composed of 19 scientific papers. Most were cross-sectional studies with an evidence level 2C (n=17, 90%) written in English (n=16, 84%). The primary thematic axes were risk of contamination and risk of psycho-emotional illness arising from the delivery of care to patients infected with COVID-19. Conclusion: the review presents the potential effects of providing care to patients with COVID-19 on the health of workers. It also reveals the importance of interventions focused on the most prevalent occupational risks during the pandemic. The studies' level of evidence suggests a need for studies with more robust designs.


Objetivo: analisar as evidências sobre os riscos de adoecimento ocupacional aos quais estão expostos os profissionais de saúde que cuidam de pacientes acometidos pela COVID-19. Método: revisão integrativa da literatura realizada por meio de busca on-line nas bases de dados Medical Literature Analysis and Retrieval System Online (MEDLINE/PubMed), Web of Science (WoS), Excerpta Medica Data-base (EMBASE), Cumulative Index to Nursing and Allied Health Literature (CINAHL) e Scopus (Elsevier). Incluíram-se artigos originais, publicados entre novembro de 2019 e junho de 2020, sem restrições de idioma. A análise descritiva dos resultados é apresentada em duas categorias. Resultados: a amostra constituiu-se de 19 produções científicas com predomínio da língua inglesa (n=16, 84%) e estudos de corte transversal, com nível de evidência 2C (n=17, 90%). Os estudos mostraram, como principais eixos temáticos, o risco de contaminação e o risco de adoecimento psicoemocional no atendimento a pacientes acometidos pela COVID-19. Conclusão: a revisão mostrou os potenciais efeitos sobre a saúde dos profissionais durante o atendimento de pacientes acometidos pela COVID-19. Evidenciou-se a importância da implementação de estratégias de intervenção focadas nos riscos ocupacionais mais prevalentes durante a pandemia. O nível de evidência dos estudos sugere a necessidade de desenvolvimento de pesquisas com delineamentos mais robustos.


Objetivo: analizar las evidencias sobre los riesgos de enfermedad ocupacional a los cuales están expuestos los profesionales de la salud que cuidan de pacientes afectados por la COVID-19. Método: revisión integradora de la literatura realizada a través de búsqueda online en las bases de datos Medical Literature Analysis and Retrieval System Online (MEDLINE/PubMed), Web of Science (WoS), Excerpta Medica Data-base (EMBASE), Cumulative Index to Nursing and Allied Health Literature (CINAHL) y Scopus (Elsevier). Fueron incluidos artículos originales, publicados entre noviembre de 2019 y junio de 2020, sin restricciones de idioma. El análisis descriptivo de los resultados se presenta en dos categorías. Resultados: la muestra fue constituida por 19 producciones científicas con predominio del idioma inglés (n=16, 84%) y estudios de corte transversal con nivel de evidencia 2C (n=17, 90%). Los estudios mostraron como principales ejes temáticos el riesgo de contaminación y riesgo de enfermedad psicoemocional, en la atención a pacientes afectados por COVID-19. Conclusión: la revisión mostró los potenciales efectos sobre la salud de los profesionales durante la atención de pacientes afectados por COVID-19. Se evidenció la importancia de implementar estrategias de intervención, enfocadas en los riesgos ocupacionales más prevalentes durante la pandemia. El nivel de evidencia de los estudios sugiere la necesidad de desarrollar investigaciones con delineamientos más robustos.


Subject(s)
Humans , Occupational Risks , Cross-Sectional Studies , Occupational Exposure , Health Personnel , Coronavirus Infections , SARS-CoV-2 , COVID-19 , Occupational Diseases/epidemiology
7.
Eur J Epidemiol ; 37(10): 1061-1070, 2022 Oct.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2048367

ABSTRACT

During the COVID-19 pandemic, rehearsal and concert activities of professional orchestras and choirs were severely restricted based on the assumption of particularly high infection risks associated with wind instruments and singing. Therefore, our primary objective was to determine the incidence of SARS-CoV-2 infections in orchestra and choir musicians compared to controls. We also assessed influenza, flu, upper respiratory tract infections, and course of illness. Musicians from professional orchestras and choirs and controls from 23 institutions throughout Germany were included in a prospective cohort study. Data were collected from October 2020 to June 2021 by weekly online surveys. A mixed-effects cox proportional hazards model was used to assess the effect of exposure by professional activity on SARS-CoV-2 infection. In 1,097 participants (46.7 years (SD 10.3); 46.8% female; 705 orchestra, 154 choir, and 238 control subjects) 40 SARS-CoV-2 infections occurred. Cases per person-years were 0.06 in orchestras, 0.11 in choirs, and 0.03 in controls. Hazard ratios compared to controls were 1.74 (95% CI 0.58 to 5.25, p = 0.320) for orchestra musicians and 2.97 (0.87 to 10.28, p = 0.087) for choir singers. Infection source was suspected predominantly in private contexts. Disease courses were mild to moderate. Other respiratory infections were reported in 6.1% of study weeks in orchestras, 10.1% in choirs, and 8.0% in controls. Sick leave days of total study days were 0.5, 2.1 and 1.3%, respectively. This epidemiologic study during the pandemic in professional musicians indicates no increased risk of SARS-CoV-2 infections in orchestra musicians and a trend towards increased risk in choir singers compared to controls. However, the exact routes of infection could not be validated. If appropriate hygiene concepts are adhered to, safe orchestra and choir activity appears possible in pandemic times.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Occupational Diseases , Humans , Female , Male , COVID-19/epidemiology , Occupational Diseases/epidemiology , Pandemics , Prospective Studies , SARS-CoV-2
8.
Int J Environ Res Public Health ; 19(19)2022 Sep 21.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2043712

ABSTRACT

Against the backdrop of the COVID-19 pandemic, it is necessary to identify these risks and determine whether the current level of management is appropriate to respond to the risk of biological hazards depending on the occupation. In this study, the incidence and fatality rates of occupational diseases were calculated using industrial accident statistics of South Korea, and trends by year using joinpoint regression and relative risk by industry using k-means clustering were evaluated for infectious diseases. We found that infectious diseases had the third highest incidence and fourth highest fatalities among all occupational diseases. In the incidence rate, joinpoints appeared in 2009 and 2018, and the annual percent change changed to 7.79, -16.63, and 82.11. The fatality rate showed a consistent increase with an annual percent change of 4.37, but it was not significant. Industries were classified into five groups according to risk, and the legal control measures of certain industries were not sufficient. Follow-up studies are needed to rectify the structural limitations of industrial accident statistics.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Communicable Diseases , Occupational Diseases , Accidents, Occupational , COVID-19/epidemiology , Cluster Analysis , Communicable Diseases/epidemiology , Humans , Occupational Diseases/epidemiology , Pandemics , Republic of Korea/epidemiology
9.
Med Lav ; 113(4): e2022031, 2022 Aug 25.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2026274

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: Musculoskeletal disorders (MSDs) and work-related stress are among the factors that can negatively affect work ability. Given the importance of midwives' health, this study aims to evaluate the work ability of midwives and to investigate its association with the prevalence of MSDs and work-related stress in midwifery. METHODS: Ninety-one midwives participated in this study. Three questionnaires, including Nordic musculoskeletal questionnaire (NMQ) plus body map, Persian version of work ability index (WAI) questionnaire, and Health and Safety Executive (HSE) job stress questionnaire, were used to collect data. Finally, the association of MSDs, work-related stress, and individual characteristics with WAI among midwives was investigated. RESULTS: The highest rates of pain and discomfort were reported in the lower back and neck. The mean job stress was 116.08 with the highest scores on demand, role, and control subscales. The work ability among midwives was at an acceptable level of 39.07 on average. Inter-variable association analysis showed that the work ability was significantly associated with pain in the past 12 months and the number of coexisting MSDs. Job stress was not associated with work ability. CONCLUSIONS: Midwives' WAI was at an acceptable level despite high prevalence of MSDs in midwives, the confirmation of the possible correlation between MSDs and work ability, as well as the high job stress in midwifery. Since the present study was conducted during the Covid-19 pandemic, the high stress in midwives may be partly due to the pandemic and may not be permanent. However, this level of stress may reduce the midwives' work ability over a long time.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Midwifery , Musculoskeletal Diseases , Occupational Diseases , Occupational Stress , COVID-19/epidemiology , Female , Humans , Musculoskeletal Diseases/epidemiology , Occupational Diseases/epidemiology , Occupational Stress/epidemiology , Pain/epidemiology , Pandemics , Pregnancy , Surveys and Questionnaires , Work Capacity Evaluation
10.
J Occup Environ Med ; 64(11): e782-e791, 2022 Nov 01.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2018297

ABSTRACT

OBJECTIVE: To understand the flexible work practices during the COVID-19 pandemic and their impact on work-related musculoskeletal disorders (MSDs) and depression in frequent computer users. METHODS: An e-survey determined the extent of workplace changes and MSD, and the relationships between them using descriptive-statistics and chi-squared tests. RESULTS: Of 700 who commenced the survey, 511 were analyzed. Since the pandemic commenced, 80% of respondents reported they were working more from home; and 89% reported some musculoskeletal pain. Compared with prepandemic, more people worked in nonergonomic environments, computer configurations and body postures. Work location was associated with upper back pain ( P = 0.011); body posture with headache ( P = 0.027) and low back pain ( P = 0.003). CONCLUSION: Nonergonomic work environments of frequent computer users during COVID-19 are related to having upper back pain, whereas nonergonomic postures are related to having headache and low back pain.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Low Back Pain , Musculoskeletal Diseases , Musculoskeletal Pain , Occupational Diseases , Humans , Workplace , Musculoskeletal Pain/epidemiology , Musculoskeletal Pain/etiology , Occupational Diseases/epidemiology , Occupational Diseases/etiology , COVID-19/epidemiology , Low Back Pain/epidemiology , Low Back Pain/etiology , Pandemics , Risk Factors , Musculoskeletal Diseases/epidemiology , Posture , Surveys and Questionnaires , Back Pain/epidemiology , Computers , Headache/epidemiology , Headache/etiology
11.
Bratisl Lek Listy ; 123(10): 745-751, 2022.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1975114

ABSTRACT

OBJECTIVES: The aim of this cross-sectional study was to investigate the determinants of COVID-19 vaccine acceptance in University of Defence members. BACKGROUND: Vaccination is the most important method of prevention against COVID-19 and achieving sufficient vaccination rate is thus essential to maintain the military capability. METHODOLOGY: An online questionnaire was distributed electronically to 2,408 respondents in autumn 2021. The survey was designed to collect demographic predictors of vaccination, data on motivation and reasons for refusing vaccination. RESULTS: A total of 626 completed questionnaires were analyzed, of which 557 (89 %) were vaccinated and 69 (11 %) were unvaccinated respondents. The most significant predictors of vaccine acceptance were: concern about COVID-19 (OR 2.44, p < 0.001), history of COVID-19 (OR 0.39, p = 0.001). The most frequently cited motives for vaccination were health protection (74.7 %) and an easier social life (69.1 %), while concerns about vaccine safety and vaccine adverse effects (79.1 %) followed by lack of confidence in vaccine efficacy (68.7 %) were the main reasons for vaccine refusal. CONCLUSION: To increase the vaccination rate it is necessary to target the younger population and increase awareness of vaccine safety and efficacy. If these measures are not sufficient to encourage voluntary vaccine acceptance, consideration should be given to making vaccination mandatory for selected professional groups (Tab. 5, Fig. 1, Ref. 25).


Subject(s)
COVID-19 Vaccines , COVID-19 , Occupational Diseases , Vaccination Hesitancy , COVID-19/prevention & control , COVID-19 Vaccines/adverse effects , Cross-Sectional Studies , Czech Republic , Humans , Motivation , Occupational Diseases/epidemiology , Occupational Diseases/etiology , Occupational Diseases/prevention & control , Vaccination
12.
Psychosom Med ; 83(4): 387-396, 2021 05 01.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1931976

ABSTRACT

OBJECTIVE: This study aimed to quantify the prevalence of the adverse mental health outcomes in medical staff working in the hospital settings during the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic and explore the relative distribution of anxiety and depressive symptoms. METHODS: PubMed, EMBASE, China National Knowledge Infrastructure, WANFANG DATA, and VIP Database for Chinese Technical Periodicals were searched for articles published from January 1, 2019, to April 19, 2020. The prevalence estimates of adverse mental health symptoms in medical staff were pooled using the random-effects model. RESULTS: A total of 35 articles and data of 25,343 medical staff were used in the final analysis. The pooled prevalence estimates in medical staff during the COVID-19 pandemic were as follows (ordered from high to low): fear-related symptoms, 67% (95% confidence interval [CI] = 61%-73%); high levels of perceived stress, 56% (95% CI = 32%-79%), anxiety symptoms, 41% (95% CI = 35%-47%); insomnia, 41% (95% CI = 33%-50%); posttraumatic stress disorder symptoms, 38% (95% CI = 34%-43%); depressive symptoms, 27% (95% CI = 20%-34%); and somatic symptoms, 16% (95% CI = 3%-36%). The subgroup analysis revealed that the prevalence estimates of fear-related symptoms were consistently high. CONCLUSIONS: Medical staff during the COVID-19 epidemic have a high prevalence of adverse mental health symptoms. Data-based strategies are needed to optimize mental health of medical staff and other health care professionals during times of high demand such as the COVID-19 and other epidemics.PROSPERO Registration: CRD42020182433.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/psychology , Health Personnel/psychology , Mental Disorders/etiology , Mental Health/statistics & numerical data , Occupational Diseases/etiology , COVID-19/epidemiology , Health Personnel/statistics & numerical data , Humans , Mental Disorders/epidemiology , Occupational Diseases/epidemiology , Pandemics
13.
Int J Environ Res Public Health ; 19(12)2022 06 14.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1896859

ABSTRACT

Lockdown resulting from the pandemic led to a change in the health habits of the computer workers community. Sedentary work, together with less active lifestyles, aggravated by the COVID-19 pandemic leads to impacts on physical activity (PA) and can contribute to the development of musculoskeletal symptoms (MSS). Aim(s): Understand the effects of lockdown on the perception of physical activity levels and on the perception of frequency of musculoskeletal symptoms, over periods of 12 months and 7 days, in computer workers. Methods: Longitudinal comparative study between 2019 (M1) and 2021 (M2), over 18 months, in 40 volunteer participants. The inclusion criteria were full-time workers aged between 18 and 65 and the exclusion criteria included diagnosis of non-work-related medical conditions. In addition to a socio-demographic questionnaire, the Nordic musculoskeletal questionnaire (NMQ) was used to evaluate the MSS and the International Physical Activity Questionnaire (IPAQ), was used to analyse the perception of the level of PA. These questionnaires were used in two assessment stages (M1 and M2). McNemar test and Wilcoxon paired test were used to evaluate the effect of lockdown on the perception of PA, and on the perception of frequency of musculoskeletal symptoms. Results: The MSS prevalence in the previous 12 months increased significantly in the neck (M1: 45.0%, M2: 62.5%, p = 0.046), in the shoulders (M1: 37.5%, M2: 55.0%, p = 0.033), and in the hands/wrists (M1: 25.0%, M2: 45.0%, p = 0.019). The mean pain score increased in the shoulders (1.43 ± 2.24, 2.35 ± 2.55, p = 0.003) and in the elbows (0.18 ± 0.59, 0.60 ± 1.34, p = 0.015). No differences were found in the PA between M1 and M2, but the weekly mean sitting time increased from 4.75 ± 2.26 to 6.26 ± 2.65 (p < 0.001). Conclusion: After 18 months it became clear that MSS perception increased mainly in the neck, shoulders and hands/wrists with a significant increase in pain intensity in the shoulder and elbow regions. The weekly sitting time increased significantly. Further studies are needed in order to determine the impact of teleworking in a pandemic context. But multifactor behind these results should be taken into account by health institutions and those responsible for the Prevention of Occupational Risks in Computer Workers in order to adopt educational strategies for the promotion of Physical activity (PA), in these workers.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Musculoskeletal Diseases , Occupational Diseases , Adolescent , Adult , Aged , COVID-19/epidemiology , Communicable Disease Control , Computers , Exercise , Humans , Longitudinal Studies , Middle Aged , Musculoskeletal Diseases/epidemiology , Musculoskeletal Diseases/prevention & control , Occupational Diseases/epidemiology , Pandemics , Perception , Surveys and Questionnaires , Young Adult
14.
Clinics (Sao Paulo) ; 76: e2641, 2021.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1870060

ABSTRACT

OBJECTIVES: We aimed to analyze the vocal self-perception of Brazilian teachers and their communication needs, vocal signs and symptoms, and voice-related lifestyles during the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic and, based on this information, to develop guidance materials intended for dissemination to these teachers and the general community. METHODS: An online questionnaire designed for this survey was distributed via the researchers' networks and was available for completion by any teacher, except those who were not working at the time. There were 1,253 teachers from all over Brazil, of both sexes, covering a wide age range, working at different levels of education, and most with more than ten years of experience. Descriptive and inferential analyses of the data were performed. RESULTS: On comparing the prepandemic period with the current one, participants indicated voice improvements. In contrast, they presented symptoms such as dry throat, effort in addressing remote classes, hoarseness after classes, and difficulties with the use of headphones, among others. They further indicated stress, general fatigue, impact of the pandemic on mental health, and the overlapping of many home tasks with professional tasks. Some smoked, and others hydrated insufficiently. CONCLUSION: Although teachers generally noticed voice improvements during the pandemic, a proportion of them perceived worsening of voices. Many indicated several factors in which speech-language pathologists could guide them with the aim of improving performance and comfort during remote and hybrid classes, an initiative that will positively impact not only their voice and communication but also their quality of life.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Coronavirus , Occupational Diseases , Voice Disorders , Brazil , Child , Communication , Female , Humans , Male , Occupational Diseases/epidemiology , Occupational Diseases/therapy , Pandemics , Quality of Life , SARS-CoV-2 , Self Concept , Speech Therapy , Voice Disorders/epidemiology , Voice Disorders/therapy , Voice Quality
15.
Environ Int ; 161: 107136, 2022 03.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1864560

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: The World Health Organization (WHO) and the International Labour Organization (ILO) have produced the WHO/ILO Joint Estimates of the Work-related Burden of Disease and Injury (WHO/ILO Joint Estimates). For these, systematic reviews of studies estimating the prevalence of exposure to selected occupational risk factors have been conducted to provide input data for estimations of the number of exposed workers. A critical part of systematic review methodology is to assess the quality of evidence across studies. In this article, we present the approach applied in these WHO/ILO systematic reviews for performing such assessments on studies of prevalence of exposure. It is called the Quality of Evidence in Studies estimating Prevalence of Exposure to Occupational risk factors (QoE-SPEO) approach. We describe QoE-SPEO's development to date, demonstrate its feasibility reporting results from pilot testing and case studies, note its strengths and limitations, and suggest how QoE-SPEO should be tested and developed further. METHODS: Following a comprehensive literature review, and using expert opinion, selected existing quality of evidence assessment approaches used in environmental and occupational health were reviewed and analysed for their relevance to prevalence studies. Relevant steps and components from the existing approaches were adopted or adapted for QoE-SPEO. New steps and components were developed. We elicited feedback from other systematic review methodologists and exposure scientists and reached consensus on the QoE-SPEO approach. Ten individual experts pilot-tested QoE-SPEO. To assess inter-rater agreement, we counted ratings of expected (actual and non-spurious) heterogeneity and quality of evidence and calculated a raw measure of agreement (Pi) between individual raters and rater teams for the downgrade domains. Pi ranged between 0.00 (no two pilot testers selected the same rating) and 1.00 (all pilot testers selected the same rating). Case studies were conducted of experiences of QoE-SPEO's use in two WHO/ILO systematic reviews. RESULTS: We found no existing quality of evidence assessment approach for occupational exposure prevalence studies. We identified three relevant, existing approaches for environmental and occupational health studies of the effect of exposures. Assessments using QoE-SPEO comprise three steps: (1) judge the level of expected heterogeneity (defined as non-spurious variability that can be expected in exposure prevalence, within or between individual persons, because exposure may change over space and/or time), (2) assess downgrade domains, and (3) reach a final rating on the quality of evidence. Assessments are conducted using the same five downgrade domains as the Grading of Recommendations Assessment, Development and Evaluation (GRADE) approach: (a) risk of bias, (b) indirectness, (c) inconsistency, (d) imprecision, and (e) publication bias. For downgrade domains (c) and (d), the assessment varies depending on the level of expected heterogeneity. There are no upgrade domains. The QoE-SPEO's ratings are "very low", "low", "moderate", and "high". To arrive at a final decision on the overall quality of evidence, the assessor starts at "high" quality of evidence and for each domain downgrades by one or two levels for serious concerns or very serious concerns, respectively. In pilot tests, there was reasonable agreement in ratings for expected heterogeneity; 70% of raters selected the same rating. Inter-rater agreement ranged considerably between downgrade domains, both for individual rater pairs (range Pi: 0.36-1.00) and rater teams (0.20-1.00). Sparse data prevented rigorous assessment of inter-rater agreement in quality of evidence ratings. CONCLUSIONS: We present QoE-SPEO as an approach for assessing quality of evidence in prevalence studies of exposure to occupational risk factors. It has been developed to its current version (as presented here), has undergone pilot testing, and was applied in the systematic reviews for the WHO/ILO Joint Estimates. While the approach requires further testing and development, it makes steps towards filling an identified gap, and progress made so far can be used to inform future work in this area.


Subject(s)
Occupational Diseases , Occupational Exposure , Cost of Illness , Humans , Occupational Diseases/epidemiology , Occupational Diseases/etiology , Prevalence , Review Literature as Topic , World Health Organization
16.
Otolaryngol Pol ; 76(2): 34-41, 2021 Dec 22.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1835528

ABSTRACT

<b> Aim:</b> The aim of the study was to analyze the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic and the related change of the teaching mode from stationary to distance learning on the severity of voice-related ailments among teachers. </br></br> <b> Materials and methods:</b> A questionnaire survey of teachers was conducted to assess voice disorders during stationary and remote work using the Vocal Tract Discomfort (VTDs) scale and Numeric Rating Scale (NRS), and the respondents' subjective feelings were assessed. Demographic and environmental factors associated with voice work were examined. Data on sickness absence, which were obtained from the "Health Needs Maps 2020" Ministry of Health's, were also analyzed. Responses were subjected to statistical analysis. A P-value level below 0.05 was considered statistically significant. </br></br> <b>Results:</b> 128 teachers participated in the survey. The overall assessment of voice disorders using VTDs and NRS scales showed no statistically significant differences for complaints between stationary and remote work. Detailed analysis revealed more se-vere voice disorders in teachers working more than 6 months remotely (P = 0.049) and having more than 20 lessons per week (P = 0.012). Subjective assessment confirmed a significantly lower percentage of teachers reporting voice disorders when wor-king remotely compared to stationary (P = 0.043). This resulted in less sickness absence and a 40% decrease in sick leave related to voice disorders in 2020 compared to 2019. </br></br> <b>Conclusions:</b> During the remote learning period of the COVID-19 pandemic, teachers reported lower severity of voice disor-ders and this influenced the reduction of sickness absences. There were no statistically significant differences in voice complaints as assessed by VTDs and NRS scales for both teaching modes. Several factors affecting the severity of vocal tract disorders were identified - the number of class hours per week (>20) for stationary teaching and a long period of remote teaching (>6 months).


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Occupational Diseases , Voice Disorders , COVID-19/epidemiology , Humans , Occupational Diseases/diagnosis , Occupational Diseases/epidemiology , Pandemics , Voice Disorders/diagnosis , Voice Disorders/epidemiology , Voice Quality
18.
J Occup Health ; 64(1): e12329, 2022 Jan.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1800405

ABSTRACT

OBJECTIVES: This study examined the relationship between frequency of working from home and low back pain (LBP), considering the quality of work environment. METHODS: The study was based on a cross-sectional internet-based survey. Of 33 302 respondents, data from 12 774 desk workers were retained for analysis. We used a 0-10 numerical rating scale to assess LBP. Work environment was assessed using five subjective questions. Mixed-effects logistic regression nested by city level was used to analyze the relationship between frequency of working from home and LBP, stratified by work environment condition. RESULTS: The prevalence of LBP was 21.0%. Among those reporting a poor work environment, as opposed to almost never working from home, the multivariate odds ratio (OR) of LBP were as follows: working from home less than 1 day per week: OR = 1.25, 95% CI: 0.89-1.76, p = .190; 2-3 days per week: OR = 1.58, 95% CI: 1.16-2.16, p = .004; and 4 or more days per week: OR = 1.82, 95% CI: 1.38-2.40, p < .001. By contrast, among those reporting a good work environment, the OR of LBP did not increase as the frequency of working from home increased. CONCLUSIONS: The relationship between LBP and frequency of working from home was found to vary with the quality of the work environment; more specifically, LBP was associated with frequency of teleworking in a poor work environment. This study suggests that employers should give more support to their employees in promoting a good work environment to prevent LBP. (Words: 240/250).


Subject(s)
Low Back Pain , Occupational Diseases , Cross-Sectional Studies , Humans , Japan/epidemiology , Low Back Pain/epidemiology , Occupational Diseases/epidemiology , Occupational Diseases/etiology , Risk Factors , Surveys and Questionnaires , Teleworking
19.
Ann Intern Med ; 174(5): 649-654, 2021 05.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1726736

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: Identifying occupational risk factors for severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) infection among health care workers (HCWs) can improve HCW and patient safety. OBJECTIVE: To quantify demographic, occupational, and community risk factors for SARS-CoV-2 seropositivity among HCWs in a large health care system. DESIGN: A logistic regression model was fitted to data from a cross-sectional survey conducted in April to June 2020, linking risk factors for occupational and community exposure to coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) with SARS-CoV-2 seropositivity. SETTING: A large academic health care system in the Atlanta, Georgia, metropolitan area. PARTICIPANTS: Employees and medical staff members elected to participate in SARS-CoV-2 serology testing offered to all HCWs as part of a quality initiative and completed a survey on exposure to COVID-19 and use of personal protective equipment. MEASUREMENTS: Demographic risk factors for COVID-19, residential ZIP code incidence of COVID-19, occupational exposure to HCWs or patients who tested positive on polymerase chain reaction test, and use of personal protective equipment as potential risk factors for infection. The outcome was SARS-CoV-2 seropositivity. RESULTS: Adjusted SARS-CoV-2 seropositivity was estimated to be 3.8% (95% CI, 3.4% to 4.3%) (positive, n = 582) among the 10 275 HCWs (35% of the Emory Healthcare workforce) who participated in the survey. Community contact with a person known or suspected to have COVID-19 (adjusted odds ratio [aOR], 1.9 [CI, 1.4 to 2.6]; 77 positive persons [10.3%]) and community COVID-19 incidence (aOR, 1.5 [CI, 1.0 to 2.2]) increased the odds of infection. Black individuals were at high risk (aOR, 2.1 [CI, 1.7 to 2.6]; 238 positive persons [8.3%]). LIMITATIONS: Participation rates were modest and key workplace exposures, including job and infection prevention practices, changed rapidly in the early phases of the pandemic. CONCLUSION: Demographic and community risk factors, including contact with a COVID-19-positive person and Black race, are more strongly associated with SARS-CoV-2 seropositivity among HCWs than is exposure in the workplace. PRIMARY FUNDING SOURCE: Emory COVID-19 Response Collaborative.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/epidemiology , Health Personnel , Infectious Disease Transmission, Patient-to-Professional , Occupational Diseases/epidemiology , Occupational Exposure/adverse effects , Pneumonia, Viral/epidemiology , Adult , COVID-19/ethnology , Cross-Sectional Studies , Female , Georgia/epidemiology , Humans , Male , Middle Aged , Occupational Diseases/ethnology , Pandemics , Personal Protective Equipment , Pneumonia, Viral/ethnology , Pneumonia, Viral/virology , Risk Factors , SARS-CoV-2 , Surveys and Questionnaires , United States/epidemiology
20.
Ann Work Expo Health ; 66(6): 741-753, 2022 07 02.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1713560

ABSTRACT

Using data from the Swedish Products Register, hosted by the Swedish Chemicals Agency (KemI), national occupational injury and disease statistics, and call records from the Swedish Poisons Information Centre (PIC) we characterize health hazards of marketed cleaning products and recorded injuries, disease, and incidents linked to cleaning or disinfection agents. The results show that cleaning agents pose many kinds of health hazards, although corrosion and irritation hazards dominate, in particular for the eyes (54% of all included products). Few products were recognized as inhalation hazards. The nature of the health hazards is reflected in the occupational disease and injury statistics and PIC records for eyes and skin but not for the respiratory tract. Among occupational disease cases attributed to cleaning or disinfection agents, 61% concern skin and 26% the respiratory tract. Among occupational injury cases 64% concern chemical burns. However, only a small part (<0.5%) of all reported diseases and injuries were explicitly attributed to cleaning or disinfection agents. On average, there were 11 cases of disease attributed to cleaning or disinfection agents per million workers and year. For occupational injuries the corresponding number was 8. The data concern a broad range of sectors and occupations, but notable sectors were healthcare, accommodation and food service, and manufacturing. Women were more likely to suffer from disease, men and women equally likely to suffer from injury. PIC cases were evenly distributed between men and women, but the clear risk cases more frequently involved men. Occupational diseases increased many-fold in 2020 while injuries decreased, which could be due to COVID-19 changing use patterns of cleaning and disinfection agents at work. We conclude that cleaning agents pose a variety of risks to a large part of the workforce, although particular attention for preventive efforts may need to be directed to the healthcare, accommodation and food service, and manufacturing sectors.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Occupational Diseases , Occupational Exposure , Occupational Injuries , COVID-19/epidemiology , Female , Humans , Male , Occupational Diseases/epidemiology , Sweden/epidemiology
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